Captioning Videos

Captions, transcripts and audio descriptions of video content are required by law* when institutions of higher education:

  • publish videos on public-facing websites
  • receive a request for accommodation from students, faculty, staff and/or the general public to facilitate equitable use of a video resource**
  • receive a request for accommodation of a webcast of a live/real time open meeting or of training/informational video productions which support the institution of higher education's mission

*Basis in law: Title II of the Americans with Disabilities Act, governmental organizations must ensure “effective communication” with citizens; Section 504, all federal entities — and organizations that receive federal funding — must make accommodations for equal access; Open Meetings Act, Texas Government Code, Chapter 551 and Texas Administrative Code (1 TAC §213.32), as written in the previous list.

**For students registered with Disability Services, timely accommodations must be made for both required and optional video resources, so as to provide individuals with an equitable educational experience.

Captioning and multimedia accessibility in Higher Ed

To enable greater understanding, please refer to the following:

Contact the Division of Information Technology accessibility team if you have any questions or comments.

Did you know?

  • In the United States, about 55 million people have a disability (src: 2010 U.S. Census).
  • About 1 in 5 Americans have some kind of disability (src: 2010 U.S. Census).
  • The percentage of people affected by disabilities is growing as our population ages.
  • Two popular, free screen readers are VoiceOver (Mac OS and iOS) and NVDA (Win).
  • Good accessibility practices can improve the search ranking of your website.
  • Form fields without labels can cause problems for some assistive technology users.
  • Low color contrast makes content difficult to see, especially for users with low vision.
  • Documents linked on a website need to be accessible too (e.g., PDF and Word files).
  • Audio content, like podcasts, need transcripts for deaf or hard of hearing users.
  • Online videos should be captioned for deaf or hard of hearing users.
  • Using HTML tags correctly is very important for accessibility.
  • Descriptive link text helps make a website more accessible. Avoid using "Click here" or "Read more."
  • A "screen reader" is an application that reads content aloud to a user.
  • There is no "alt tag" in HTML. "Alt" is an attribute used with the img tag.
  • HTML uses the alt attribute to provide a text description of an image.
  • Alt text should describe an image, if the purpose of the image is to convey information.
  • If an image is a link, the alt text for the image should explain where the link goes.
  • If an image is only being used for decoration, the alt text should be null (i.e., alt="").
  • If a table has headers, using header tags (<th>) will make the table more accessible.
  • An accessible website is one that can be navigated and understood by everyone.